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LET'S EXPLORE Mini-beasts

How do flies and mosquitoes live?

A hoverfly, a fly with bee-like markingsA hoverfly, a fly with bee-like markingsFlies have only one pair of wings, unlike all other insects which have two. Crane flies, gnats and mosquitoes are all kinds of fly. Instead of biting jaws, they have mouthparts that suck up food. We often see flies as a nuisance because they spread diseases. But they are essential to the process of decomposing dead animals and plants, and waste. Many kinds also spread pollen, or are food for other animals.

Eggs and maggots on a piece of meatEggs and maggots on a piece of meat


Flies lay their eggs in places that will supply their young with plenty of food. These may include a dead animal or rotting vegetation. Flies lay up to 100 eggs. They hatch into larvae, called maggots, after a few days. Using their biting mouthparts, they eat constantly for about a week. They then find a sheltered place to pupate. After two days, they emerge from their pupae as adult flies.A bluebottle, a kind of blow fly, feedingA bluebottle, a kind of blow fly, feeding


Besides giving a fly the ability to walk on ceilings, the sticky feet hairs are also used to taste things the fly lands on.

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